Don't look now but the Islanders are in learning mode... No Really. Head Coach Scott Gordon's new system, highlighted in victories against Tampa Bay and St. Louis and low-lighted in losses to Buffalo and Florida is the topic of much discussion these days.
This is going to be the norm for the Islanders over the next month. One game on and one game off. The system works. We have all seen what the system can do when implemented and carried out. Yes that was the same team that forced the issue on the Blues and pressured their defenseman into coughing up the puck that showed up in Florida and could not apply enough of a pressure forecheck to juice an orange.
The question that is to be asked is whether the Islanders have enough talent to carry the system successfully over the long haul and the answer is yes and no. This is a system for kids. skating skating skating is what it takes to pull this off. If they do not skate the forwards get pinned down low and we all know that leads to odd man rushes the other way. Its not time yet, but I can foresee the team unloading its remaining veterans Guerin, Weight and Sillinger to let he kids run wild if they fall to many games under .500. Its way to early for that now as the team has to put forward the face that they are trying to compete. I am a fan and I will never root against the Islanders but John Tavares has 13 goals in 14 games in the OHL.
Everyone and his mother knows the NHL wants Tavares on the Maple Leafs. Let the conspiracy theorists work on that one but if you buy into that kind of thinking it makes perfect sense. The Leafs are the Yankees of the NHL. I'm sorry but I do not buy them signing Jeff Finger as trying to compete in the same off season you lose Mats Sundin. The Leafs are tanking the season in a bid to get the next great young player to enter the NHL, thats a fact.
In closing let me just say this. The players will determine the fate of the last remaining veterans on the team. What happened last year cannot happen again. Either your in playoff position, or your a seller. Enough of this 5 points out of 8th so we will stand pat. The team lost out on that by not trading Satan, Fedotenko and a couple others last season. Your either competing by the trade deadline or you are not.